Sunday, February 05, 2012

Twiggs County Needs an Ambulance Service in the county

Did you know that in the state of Georgia there are only six (yes six) counties that do not have an ambulance services located in the county?

Did you know that out of those six counties Twiggs county is the largest?

Did you know that Bleckly County has at least 3 ambulances in the county?

Did you know that Wilkinson County has at least 2?

Did you know that we have 4 major hospitals within 40 minutes of the center of Jeffersonville, and yet no ambulance service located locally?

Did you know that the average response time for the Medical Center of Central Georgia's ambulance service to reach Twiggs County proper (not the areas still within Macon city limits) is over an hour? (I would almost be willing to bet that the other five counties without ambulance services do not have an hour response time!)

Did you know that the people of Twiggs County tend to put their loved ones in their own vehicles and drive them to the emergency room because of this wait? They know that if they wait for the EMT's to arrive via ambulance their loved one will not survive the wait. (I personally know of four of such incidents in the last 6 months.)

Did you know that from the citizen's point of view this looks like a greed issue on the part of The Medical Center of Central Georgia?

I have heard too many stories in the last year to keep quiet any longer on this issue.

Why have our local leaders allowed this to continue? Why are our commissioners not stepping up and forcing the issue?

We have spaces available for a permanent ambulance service to be housed locally, we just need The Medical Center to provide the ambulance and the EMT's that go with it. The Medical Center refuses to even consider it. The space may need some work to have it 100% suitable but I am sure if the Medical Center was to say: "Twiggs County we are going to give you your ambulance substation." the citizens of this great county would step up and get the needed housing available.

The Twiggs County Board of Commissioners pays the Medical Center every year to provide TIMELY ambulance service for our county, out of OUR tax dollars. Yet, our citizens end up waiting over an hour for medical assistance via ambulance regularly.

The insurance company for the injured or ill person then also pays the Medical Center for driving out and picking up the person. (That is if they survive the wait!) This is not a cheap bill either!

My understanding is that in the state of Georgia, ambulance services are in zones. Twiggs County is zoned for ambulance service from the Medical Center and therefore we can not attempt to contract with another company that would be willing to put a service in the county.

How is this fair to the citizens of Twiggs County?

I know that this issue has been brought up over and over again, but I am beginning to think that no one is taking it seriously.

What is it going to take for The Medical Center, or the State of Georgia to wake up and do the right thing?

Is it going to take the loss of a prominent citizen of our fair county for this to be changed?

Or is it going to take a major accident on I-16 with a prominent person for this to be changed?

Citizens of Twiggs County why are we putting up with this?  We need to start a grass roots campaign writing, calling, and visiting Governor Deal, Representative Epps, Representative Scott, State Senator Paris, and US Senator Chambliss requesting their assistance in either getting the Medical Center to step up or in getting the county rezoned for an ambulance company that WILL put a manned substation locally.

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